Marilyn Monroe’s Conté drawings (c.1960s)

Updated: Sep 15, 2021

Sex symbol, Hollywood starlet, celebrated model, singer, bombshell … Marilyn Monroe is remembered for many things but aspiring artist isn’t usually among the accolades associated with the iconic actress, who died in 1962.

After her death, personal documents and mementos belonging to the celebrated actress were found in a built-in-safe concealed in one of the filing cabinets at her Brentwood home. Monroe, it seems, was following a tip from Frank Sinatra who took similar care over his effects. Among the letters, receipts and photographs was a series of drawings rendered in Conté crayon, thought to have been created as part of an art course which Monroe had enrolled in at the University of California. The rough sketches include a reclining nude as well as a depiction of a champagne glass, and feature captions written in Monroe’s handwriting.


Lover watching his love sleep and I must concentrate, sketches in Conté crayon

by Marilyn Monroe (c.1960) via Artsy

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